A Kokomo woman is facing a felony charge and two misdemeanors after driving her vehicle into a group of protesters.
Today, the Howard County Prosecutor’s Office announced Christa Redman, 32, would face multiple charges after allegedly driving her pickup truck into peaceful protesters in downtown Kokomo over the weekend while nationwide demonstrations were taking place after the death of George Floyd.
The former corrections officer at the Howard County jail was charged with leaving the scene of an accident, a class A misdemeanor; disorderly conduct, a class B misdemeanor; and criminal recklessness committed with a deadly weapon, a level 6 felony.
The charges stemmed from an incident that occurred shortly before 6 p.m. last Saturday. After a peaceful protest at Foster Park, Kokomo Police Department officers responded to a report of a vehicle striking several demonstrators who were crossing Washington Street at the intersection of Superior Street.
According to a probable cause affidavit, officers spoke with Miranda Ogle at the scene. She claimed she was on the crosswalk when a silver Dodge pickup truck approached her.
“Miranda stated the pickup honked at her and wanted her to move, but she said she wouldn’t move until the people in the crosswalk were out of the way,” read the affidavit. “Miranda stated the pickup truck advanced towards her and struck her in the front chest area with the front bumper. After striking her and another female, later identified as Deza’rae Bender … the pickup truck continued southbound on Washington Street.”
Officers also interviewed Bender on the scene as she was being tended to by paramedics. She told officers she was also in the crosswalk and that “when the truck started to advance she was struck by it and started to fall. Deza’rae stated she grabbed onto the passenger side window of the truck because she was falling, and this caused the window to break.”
Bender incurred injuries to her arm and hand in the incident. A 17-year-old female also reported an injury to her knee.
Officers later located Redman and her vehicle where it had stopped near the intersection of Armstrong and King streets.
“Christa was asked if she had been involved in an accident recently, and she stated she had,” read the probable cause affidavit. “Christa stated she attempted to drive south on Washington Street and was stopped by a crowd of people at the intersection of Washington Street and Superior Street. Christa stated the crowd was yelling and screaming at her and her children in the truck. Christa stated one subject grabbed her front passenger window and shattered it. Christa stated someone also climbed on her vehicle. Christa stated she was scared for her and her young children’s well-being and quickly pulled away and left.”
Video that circulated widely on social media of the incident showed the pickup truck bypassing traffic at the intersection to drive through the crowd. The truck appeared to cross over Washington Street’s center line in order to pass the vehicles before it crossed into the line of peaceful protesters.
A warrant was issued out of Howard Circuit Court with a bond of $10,000 with 10 percent allowed. Redman surrendered herself at the Howard County jail, according to a release by the prosecutor’s office. Jail records indicated she was booked at 1:41 p.m. today and bonded out at 2:09 p.m.
Redman was formerly a correctional officer at the jail. The day after the incident, Sheriff Jerry Asher announced that a correctional officer had resigned from her position following an internal investigation by the Howard County Sheriff’s Office. Howard County Prosecutor Mark McCann confirmed today that it was Redman who was the correctional officer who resigned.